The Oscar-winning actor, who plays the part of Ryan in the new film, has revealed how ”absurdly excited” he became after meeting a model of his character.
Eddie said: ”I got to meet my engine, which is amazing. When you go there, they sort of introduce you to a model of him. Your inner six-year-old is having a disco. It’s amazing. Absurdly excited.
”But I was kind of upset that I didn’t get to act alongside other actors. I know Olivia Colman was doing it. We crossed paths in the green room.”
Eddie also explained the unique challenges of playing a voice-only character.
He told Entertainment Weekly: ”I’ve never ever voiced any form of cartoon character in my life and it was an extraordinary thing.
”It’s all the weirdness that you hear it is. You stand by yourself in a booth, and you have a Thomas voice coach, who specifically coaches everyone on how to adhere to the Thomas world.
”What was interesting was, having never really done a voice, I started by playing it quite naturalistic. I started off doing it quite simply, and quite close to my voice, and in the end I think I was about 17 octaves higher.”
Children will likely be chuffed by this feature-length adventure featuring the voice of Eddie Redmayne, but others may be derailed by the similarity to Lost
Thomas the Tank Engine doesn’t exactly have an exemplary track record when it comes to movie adaptations. Just witness the mess that was 2000’s Thomas and the Magic Railroad for proof. Not only were all the trains given creepy new faces that made them look as if Gollum had been stretched across the rim of a bass drum, but the Fat Controller was ousted in a dramatic coup and replaced by what appeared to be a dust-obsessed French policeman played by wilderness-era Alec Baldwin. It was, pun very much intended, a trainwreck.
However, could salvation be around the corner in the form of Thomas and Friends: Sodor’s Legend of the Lost Treasure, a 60-minute film being released theatrically next month? Featuring voice talent including Eddie Redmayne, John Hurt and Jamie Campbell Bower, it will either signal the resuscitation of Thomas the Tank Engine, or definitively shunt him into the buffers.